Ladies (Chadbourne) Hall: 420 N Park Street [original building: 1874-1959, current building: 1960-present]
Location(s): Boarding houses were common and numerous near campus – some located on the current sites (as of 2015) of Humanities, Memorial Library, the University of Wisconsin Extension Building, and along Lake and State Streets.
In the early days of campus, men and women did not have many options for places to live. Men lived in North and South Halls in the beginning, but South Hall was eventually for a brief period of time open to women, prior to the building of Ladies Hall. In the latter half of the 19th century, both North and South Halls closed their doors to residents and men began to move into boarding houses that popped up all over the city. Women also had the option to live in boarding houses, which many did, because in the beginning Ladies Hall was only open to residents of Wisconsin.
To entertain themselves, the men and women played all sorts of parlor games. These included: “Squails!”, Whist, Euchre (Still a true Wisconsin favorite), Cribbage, Le Circle, checkers, chess and poker to name a few. They also hosted different types of parties and concerts, including fudge parties. The same went for Ladies’ Hall, though women had a strict curfew. They hosted concerts and socials. Entertainment outside of the boarding houses and Ladies’ Hall included
canoeing, sleigh rides, beach “bathing” parties, picnics and camping.
Boarding houses gradually fell out of style as the 20th century went on, being replaced by dormitories and apartment complexes.
Visit UWMadArchives on Flickr to view more historic images of popular UW (Madison) student hangouts: